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  1. #1
    BPnet Senior Member Mike Cavanaugh's Avatar
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    That is just nasty!

    Why are some of my ASF's eating poop? I just noticed that one of my tanks had less poop in it then it should,because today is cleaning day. Well I sat back and watched, and some of the moms are eating poop!!!! YUCKO!

    Then I saw one of the moms in another tank doing the same thing! I feed Mazuri 6f and occasionaly carrots. I use food hoppers so they NEVER run out of food... they also never run out of water. All the moms seen doing this are currently nursing litters.

    They seem perfectly normal and healthy. In fact, the tank where almost all of the poop has been eaten has much fatter / bigger looking babies! I know they are healthy. Since I started breeding asf's months ago, not a single ASF has died... other then the ones that were fed off of course!
    Mikey Cavanaugh
    (904) 318-3333

  2. #2
    BPnet Veteran Dave763's Avatar
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    Re: That is just nasty!

    Coprophagia(poop eating) is a normal (yet nasty) behavior seen in some breeds of dogs.
    It could be something missing in the diet. From what you posted I would think the diet was good.
    I have never seen it happen with the rats I breed. I don't have any experience with ASF rats.
    At least cleaning the cages will be a little easier.

  3. #3
    BPnet Veteran frankykeno's Avatar
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    Re: That is just nasty!

    It's moms with litters doing what they should be doing. In the wild females lick their babies butts to stimulate them to poop at first, the mothers ingest this first fecal matter. As the babies grow and can poop without help the mothers will ingest their offsprings fecal matter to avoid creating a dirty nest and a smell which will bring a predator on to the nest quickly. It may also help the mother to recirculate nutrients passed from them through their babies and out in the fecal matter then back to mom.

    It's only nasty because humans think it's nasty. For nursing mothers in nests in the ground, it's just business as usual.
    ~~Joanna~~


  4. #4
    BPnet Veteran ctrlfreq's Avatar
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    Re: That is just nasty!

    Quote Originally Posted by mcavana View Post
    the tank where almost all of the poop has been eaten has much fatter / bigger looking babies!
    It's possible they may be consuming them for nutrients that are more easily absorbed in the post-digestion form. Rabbits do this through a process known as cecotrophy, which is the only way they're able to absorb certain vitamins.

    The Earth is the cradle of mankind, but one cannot live in the cradle forever. -Konstantin Tsiolkovsky




  5. #5
    BPnet Veteran twh's Avatar
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    Re: That is just nasty!

    completly normal for rodents,besides the above mentioned reasons it's believed the bacteria from feces helps digest food.
    TIMOTHY W. HURKMANS

    " Do you really believe that what you believe is really real ? "

  6. #6
    BPnet Veteran littleindiangirl's Avatar
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    Re: That is just nasty!

    Quote Originally Posted by twh View Post
    completly normal for rodents,besides the above mentioned reasons it's believed the bacteria from feces helps digest food.
    Ditto that. Many plant eating animals do this to get all of the nutrients the second go around. The plant matter is so hard to digest, they need to do it twice.

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